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My Computer Guy, who knew I was looking for another laptop, called
early one morning, Boy, did he have THE machine for me.
CG was located in an Undisclosed Location one-third of the way to
Washington, DC, in a burg made memorable by DuPont moolah.
I had come to rely on CG, because like most techies, he discerned
mechanical matters masterfully. This was in decided contrast to his
dealings with human beings. People were definitely a different matter:
It seemed they were always taking advantage of his kindness. No, not his
customers. But the helpers he hired to answer the phone and process
orders and repairs. Hence “Annie,” a painfully skinny but
pleasant-enough woman trained in computer assembly turned out to be a
junkie who was then sent back to prison for violating parole, while
“Cavanaugh,” the older man who claimed he was an erstwhile Noo Yawk cop
launching a second career as a writer, crashing for free on Computer
Guy’s couch actually kited thousands of dollars of bad checks.
CG was philosophical and a little apologetic about his administrative
troubles, and now his mom, white-haired and spunky, aka “The General,”
was answering the telephone, only temporarily, one might hope, to allow
him, a grown man, to finally get out from under her thumb.
Last time, CG had snagged me a terrific Zenith from a corporate
office close-out, and this time, he said excitedly, he had a picked up a
small batch of laptops at a government-surplus equipment auction. Well,
he amended, actually, there was a middle-man, a shifty-looking bearish
guy in a raincoat, with a KGB accent, who came to his store the other
day with an armful of computer notebooks, a trio of them.
That alone should have alerted me, but it didn’t. The Russian thing,
I mean. CG is so trusting, while I am his complete opposite, so
suspicious some people consider me paranoid, and rightfully
Nevertheless, my stalwart beauty therapist buddy “Belinda” and I drove down to CG’s store. When we got there, CG proudly handed me a laptop. “Here, this is the biggest and the best of the bunch,” he grinned, suddenly bombarded by a welter of customers before he could totally check the machine out.
I took it anyway.
I was amazed at the laptop’s pristine condition. It had capacious memory, a huge hard drive, the latest software, and, CG did not hesitate to point out, a welter of games — other than “Doom,” which he knows I hate — to distract me once deadline pressures were met and I needed to decompress.
So we drive back and Belinda drops me off at my house. Can I say this before they come get me? Remember those missing three laptop computers, one classified and containing top-secret information affecting national security, stolen from the State Department that Madeleine Albright gave her little “if you work here, it’s your job to lock the door” speech about after they were
This is about that, er, sort of. Well, mine — and it WAS mine for a few hours — wasn’t one of those. But, and this is a big but, guess who it apparently belonged to?
Whoa. Could this be true??? William Jefferson
First, I contacted a longtime Arkansas political journalist of my slight acquaintance — let’s call him “Jeremy Barker” — who immediately e-mailed me back:
“What kind of stuff might Bill Clinton have on his laptop? Well, I know he has one, because I remember an interview about technology several years back where he talked about hopping in bed with the laptop and e-mailing friends, etc. Did he use the internet, he was asked, and he said yes, during the day in the Oval Office, and then blathered about sometimes hopping into bed with the laptop at night.
“What might he have on it? Well, the one true thing, I’m sure he’s a heavy E-Mail user. He loves interaction with people, is basically addicted to it, and I’m sure E-Mail is made for him in that regard. … I doubt much of the official presidential business (on his end) is carried on via computer. The president gets a written ‘executive summary’ of every issue, and they take it from there with how much documentation he gets. He’s a voracious reader, so I’m sure he asks for lots. But I’ve read about how this is conducted through the White House food chain, and because of chain of command, I’m pretty sure he still gets paperwork (although I’m sure top aides can e-mail him with notes).
“As for his personal usage? I’d guess HEAVY downloading of naked female celebrities. No doubt he’s seen the Pam Anderson-Tommy Lee tape. Playboy.com is no doubt a favorite site. He’s invited more Hollywood celebrities for sleepovers at the White House than any president in history (including Reagan, who was an actor and former screen actors guild prez), so I’m sure after they’re gone, he tries to find naked pictures of the ladies. I know Kim Basinger and Alec Baldwin are mainstays, as are John Travolta and Kelly Preston, so I’m sure Kim and Kelly’s naked poses are cherished items. Of course, that’s speculation. But I’d guess more porn than Department of Agriculture crop forecasts.”
What did I find? Man, was this laptop LOADED up. Pentium 2, 128 mgs RAM, 4.7 gig hard drive. Infrared data transfer. Stuffed.
- The complete campaign strategy of
“Barbie for President,” exhaustively analyzed by a program simulating SunTzu, Baron Von Clausewitz, Robert Pirsig, Ralph Lauren, and Steve Wozniak.
- A letter of apology to Chelsea because Bill and Hillary never let Chelsea have a Barbie Doll as a child. “I know now, Pumpkin, that your mother and I were wrong, and I apologize for that, just as I have apologized for the Altoids and all the rest of it. I know now that had we let you play with Barbies, well, I can’t answer for the consequences of your deprivation. Ken, of course, is another matter.”
- A PDF file copy of one of those new best-selling books on prolonging the male orgasm through Tantra, tamtrums, judiciously ingested Tums, and reciting a Federally funded Mantra.
- Buddy’s and Socks’ veterinary records, small animal breeding notes, plus a copy of Bill’s will leaving EVERYTHING to
them, or their descendants. No mention here of PeeWee the White House Turtle, the low-profile pet who will never be mentioned to the press by Joe Lockhart and will probably outlive them all.
- Something unintelligible about secret baseball. hand-signals, with an equally cryptic notation about wanting to introduce
Saxophone Karaoke to Our National Pastime by pretending to play his horn in a pre-game rendition of the “National Anthem” for the Baltimore Orioles, with the advance publicity including a billboard with just one word, “Horny?”
- The MP3 Playlist for Renaissance Weekends and Trilateral
Commission meetings … contrasted with
Waco. No overlap whatsoever.
- A highly redacted enumeration of White House movie rentals, blacking out porn and cartoon titles and leaving in the coterie films of the growing number of his Hollywood cronies.
- Secret logs of Bill’s golf games, dividing his IQ by his putting handicap, to create a new constant used to give him a sense of progress in the one game he can’t
- The One-Minute:
Liar A Compleat Guide to Imperial Fudging, Fooling, Canards, Concealment, Confabulation, Falsehoods, Fabrication, Hyperbole, Misrepresentation, Pseudology, Stonewalling, Temporization, Tergiversation, Mendacity, Prevarication, and, um, Spin, by Stephanopoulous/Carville and/or Matalin.
Later that same day, under cover of darkness, my Computer Guy drove to my house and snatched the laptop back, muttering something unintelligible about a horrible mistake, and that Russian guy in the raincoat, and now I’ll never know, was it all … just a joke, and a fantasy?